Monday, 12 June 2017

DIY Naturally Tinted Canada Day Maple Leaf Dog Treats

O Canadogs! We've got some extra fun goodies planned for you over the next few weeks in the lead up to your great big 150th Canada Day pawty!  Woohoo!  We love to create and share (we take requests too!) special posts for special days around the globe, but Canada is also home to some of our family and special friends.

The maple leaf shapes are made with a mini maple leaf cookie cutter and further embellished with a knife to add veins  Unlike some treat designs, I don't have a tool-free shortcut for making maple leaves, but you can always trace and cut shapes by hand if you'd like or stamp an impression into a simple round biscuit instead. That said, a pretty leaf cookie cutter is handy for autumn baking, not just Canada Day. :)

With simple tinting, you can easily turn your favourite roll-and-cut dog treat recipe into a special Canada Day treat. Our maple leaf treats were naturally tinted using beetroot powder, but you substitute another natural red or use food colouring if you prefer, or leave thinsg their natural colour and focus on the shape - we have an AWESOME (non-tinted) maple dog treat recipe for you next week as well as a naturally coloured strawberry treat recipe later this month so stay tuned for more ideas! We wanted to share this post first so that you could see the male leaves being cut and marked, as the same shaping technique was used in next week's special Canada Day recipe. 

If you are simply making maple leaf shaped treats (tinted or not), you can use any recipe you dog enjoys. Woofs!  It's totally up to you!  To make your own pretty little coloured maple leaf treats like those shown, you will need either a neutral roll-and-cut dog treat dough for tinting or you can from either a naturally redish or a yellow/orange dough base.

Tips and Tricks: 
  • Lighter coloured dough (or a compatible coloured dough) will work best for tinting.
  • Beetroot powder (my go-to for natural pinks and reds) will tint to a pinkish hue, so you can start with a yellow or orange base or add some tint with your beetroot to warm the pink closer to red.  Turmeric works well for this, but isn't really a smell/taste companion for my fruity recipe used with these treats (see below) so I stuck with plain beetroot and pinkish leaves for this post!
  • We have a whole post about using natural ingredients to tint/dye food and treats. Check it out here for other ingredient and/or colour ideas along with other helpful info.

I used my Banana Apple Cinnamon (vegan-friendly) treat dough as inspiration for these treats but customised the recipe and snuck a wee little splash of maple syrup into the mix along with the beetroot powder because hey...Canada Day! A few other ideas from our shape treat recipe collection include our naturally-coloured Leafy Green treat dough (swap wheatgrass for beetroot), the beetroot-based Pink Valentine treat dough, or maybe our "Stinky Pinky" Salmon treat dough. There are plenty more ideas in our shape treat recipe collection as well.  Truth be told though, I think my dogs would probably suggest trying the salmon. They LOVE those fishy treats! 

Hungry for more tasty treats?  See all of our recipes hereRemember, treats are for spoiling your pup in moderation. Some dogs have special dietary requirements and/or food allergies/intolerances. If you are ever in doubt or have questions about your dog's diet and health, have a chat with your vet. 

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